Resilience and innovation: Playing and fidgeting for keeping well

Wellness kits help youth develop stronger mental health

Resilience and innovation: Playing and fidgeting for keeping well

Mental health is a hot topic. We often hear about how important it is and ideas to improve it. But why is it so important? Mental health impacts how we view, feel, think, act and interact with others and our world which can impact our ability to enjoy life, our self-esteem, our connections with others, and how we deal with challenges like COVID-19.

It may be a surprise to learn that activities like colouring, games, puzzles and fidget cubes are supports for stronger mental health.

Backpack, puzzle and cube game

Mental health is important for everyone, and it has become even more so in the last several months as our community adapts and responds to COVID-19. Strathcona County, the Strathcona County library, Alberta Health Services and Mental Health Capacity Building teamed up to create resources to help youth build resiliency and support their mental health.

The resulting wellness kits are a collaborative effort that provide activities, games, puzzles, questions and resources to help youth learn about and build their own mental health, connect with others and learn about LGBTQ2S+ topics, relationships, Indigenous culture and emotional regulation.

Backpack, posters, rainbow stickers and fidgeting toys

The kits can be checked out from or viewed at the library and checked out from the bookmobile. After their launch, schools have already contacted the team to help them create kits for their students. Even though the COVID-19 pandemic delayed the launch of these kits by several months, they’re already checked out from the library with a growing wait list.

Back pack, creative spirit poster, fidgeting toys

The creation of these kits was possible because of the strong, collaborative partnerships in Strathcona County, and their dedication to helping youth cope and build their mental health. To check out the wellness kits, visit sclibrary.ca and search “well kits.” If you are interested in developing similar kits for your school, contact familyandcommunity@strathcona.ca.

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